L to R: Rita Ellington, Barbara Lemieux, Cindy Garp, Debbie Dunham, Guy Rouse, Lucas Gomez, Barbara Neptune, Gloria Matthews, Bob Wilson, Nancy Aitken. Not pictured: Peg Karas, Kathy Eatmon, Barbara Odgers, Linda Allen, Jan Voelpel, Freda Pyron, Bubba McLean, John Fifer, Brennan Fifer, Isaac Hopkins, Lee Merrion, Jason Ellington.
The North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores recently saluted its more than 200 volunteers and singled out several for outstanding contributions to the Aquarium’s conservation mission. Special honors went to:
-Rita Ellington of Newport, best known as a River Otter exhibit interpreter — Volunteer of the Year.
-Debbie Dunham of Bridgeton, for flexibility in filling a variety of roles - Order of the Octopus.
-Peg Karas of Chocowinity, for outstanding customer service – Order of the Spadefish.
Also honored were Kathy Eatmon of Newport, Barbara Odgers of New Bern and Lucas Gomez of Morehead City – for Above and Beyond performance of duties; Nancy Aitken, Barbara Neptune and Guy Rouse, all of Morehead City; Linda Allen, Jan Voelpel and Bob Wilson of Emerald Isle; Gloria Matthews of Swansboro and Freda Pyron of New Bern for Dedicated Volunteer Service and Barbara Lemieux of Emerald Isle for many hours interpreting at the summer Penguin Plunge exhibit. Cindy Garp of Jacksonville is Diver of the Year and Bubba McLean is Rookie Diver of the Year. The Saturday A dive team led by John Fifer is Dive Team of the Year. Members include Brennan Fifer, Isaac Hopkins, Lee Merrion and Jason Ellington. Click here to see more photos of award winners. The Volunteer Department is hosting an informational open house 9-11 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 2, for anyone interested in joining the volunteer team. For more information, contact Volunteer Coordinator Chris Carlin at 252-247-4003, ext. 286.